Mike Rossi

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Content: Globalization: Student Evaluations and Testimonials

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Formally listed as "Globalization and the Non-Western World", this class is always a pleasure to teach and ends up being a favorite of many students over the years. What is more is that the first Globalization class I designed and taught in Fall 2004 remains to this day one of the best classes I ever had and serves as a sort of Aristotelian model for how I should teach every small-size upper-level class. It gave me the first opportunity to individually engage students and present challenging, yet easy to read, material for research and discussion.

Also because of the timing of when the course was offered, I often had students who had taken at least one class previously with me, giving me an opportunity for me to know them and they to know what to expect from me. I often marketed the class as additional study for both Intro to IR and Intro to Comparative Politics, as well as continued study from Politics and Culture. As such, I already had at least half a class of students who know me, and a full class of interested and dedicated students by semester's end. This was also the first class in which I was told by students that it was the "best class" they've ever had, and recommended it to their friends to take the next time it was offered. One student in particular many years ago took the class when it was offered on a Friday morning in a remote part of campus and told me, in so many words, that my class was the only class he'd get up for on a Friday morning and travel across town to take.

The Spring 2005 class was offered "on demand" from students who heard about the class from students of the previous semester and indicated a strong interest in taking it if offered. The class was added to the course offerings and filled up within 72 hours. Unfortunately for whatever reason, I only have the numerical evaluation data for that semester and somehow misplaced, lost, or even got rid of, the testimonials.

If I had to choose out of a number of great classes I've offered over the years, Globalization has been the most enjoyable and most fun to teach. Students really like that it is a "contemporary issues" class that discusses everyday things like the Internet, popular culture, music, art, food, economics, and consumerism. It is effectively a class that applies critical thinking skills to familiar and everyday concerns. The expectations are high, but the material is straight forward and students have really enjoyed working in this class.

Selected Comments from Students

As with all other courses, the data provides comparative statistics for each time the class was offered. The chart below replicates the exact questions students answered followed by selected comments. The "Mean of Section" and "Mean of Course" are identical because it was the only section offered. Both are weighed against

  1. Department-wide courses
  2. University-wide courses

 

No QuestionTerm Evaluation Mean of Section Mean of Course Mean of Dept. Mean of Level
DisagreeNeutralAgreeØ
1 2 3 4 5

 

 

1

The instructor was prepared for class and presented the material in an organized matter

2009 Fall 0 0 0 1 32 0 4.97 4.97 4.54 4.58
2007 Fall 0 0 0 1 12 0 4.92 4.92 4.50 4.51
2005 Spr 0 0 0 1 28 1 4.97 4.97 4.44 4.39
2004 Fa. 0 0 0 1 23 3 4.96 4.96 4.45 4.43
2

The instructor responded effectively to student comments and questions

2009 Fall 0
0 0 2 31 0 4.94
4.94 4.54
4.60
2007 Fall 0 0 0 0 13 0 5.00 5.00 4.50 4.50
2005 Spr 0 0 0 2 27 1 4.93 4.93 4.43 4.39
2004 Fall 0 0 0 2 22 0 4.92 4.92 4.41 4.36
3

 

The instructor generated interest in the course material

2009 Fall 0
0
0 4 29 0 4.88
4.88
4.38
4.42
2007 Fall 0 0 0 0 13 0 5.00 5.00 4.34 4.29
2005 Spr 0 0 0 1 27 2 4.96 4.96 4.25 4.25
2004 Fall 0 0 0 1 22 1 4.96 4.96 4.23 4.15
4

 

The instructor had a positive attitude toward assisting all students in understanding course material

2009 Fall 0 0 0 1 32 0 4.97 4.97 4.58 4.59
2007 Fall 0 0 0 0 13 0 5.00 5.00 4.57 4.53
2005 Spr
0 0 0 0 30 0 5.00 5.00 4.45 4.45
2004 Fall 0 0 1 0 23 0 4.92 4.92 4.45 4.39
5

 

The instructor assigned grades fairly

2009 Fall 0 0 0 5 28 0 4.85 4.85 4.38 4.39
2007 Fall 0 0 0 2 11 0 4.85 4.85 4.36 4.38
2005 Spr 0 0 1 8 20 1 4.66 4.66 4.15 4.16
2004 Fall 0 0 1 3 20 0 4.79 4.79 4.21 4.13
6

 

The instructional methods encouraged students learning

2009 Fall 0 0 0 2 30 1 4.94 4.94 4.20 4.25
2007 Fall 0 0 0 0 13 0 5.00 5.00 4.16 4.10
2005 Spr 0 0 0 4 24 2 4.86 4.86 4.06 4.06
2004 Fall 0 0 0 3 20 1 4.87 3.87 4.04 3.97
7

 

I learned a great deal in this course

2009 Fall 0 0 1 5 27 0 4.79 4.79 4.28 4.35
2007 Fall 0 0 0 0 13 0 5.00 5.00 4.24 4.24
2005 Spr 0 0 0 5 25 0 4.83 4.83 4.15 4.16
2004 Fall 0 0 0 2 21 1 4.91 4.91 4.17 4.17
8

 

I had a strong prior interest in the subject matter and wanted to take this course

2009 Fall 1 2 1 8 21 0 4.39 4.39 3.97 4.00
2007 Fall 0 1 2 2 8 0 4.31 4.31 3.96 3.86
2005 Spr 0 1 3 13 13 3 4.27 4.27 3.90 3.90
2004 Fall 0 2 4 2 14 2 4.27 4.27 3.96 3.91

POOR EXCELLENT
9

 

I rate the teaching effectiveness of the instructor as

2009 Fall 0 0 0 4 29 0 4.88 4.88 4.36 4.40
2007 Fall 0 0 0 0 13 0 5.00 5.00 4.34 4.41
2005 Spr 0 0 0 2 25 3 4.93 4.93 4.28 4.25
2004 Fall 0 0 0 2 20 2 4.91 4.91 4.23 4.17
10

 

I rate the overall quality of the course as

2009 Fall 0 0 0 7 26 0 4.79 4.79 4.26 4.36
2007 Fall 0 0 0 0 13 0 5.00 5.00 4.23 4.23
2005 Spr 0 0 0 1 28 1 4.97 4.97 4.14 4.16
2004 Fall 0 0 0 1 20 3 4.95 4.95 4.13 4.10

Selected Comments from Students

What do you like best about this course?

Fall 2009

"The professor's enthusiasm about teaching. He really gave students and opportunity to speak up and have an opinion. Respected students."

"Professor Rossi was really helpful and gave 100% in time and effort when assisting students."

"Subject matter. Rossi's presentation. Bi-weekly selective projects."

"I enjoyed the discussions and all the meetings we had outside of class. The group projects and papers were very helpful in understanding the material."

"The way in which the professor engaged students in lectures. The personal relationship built with the professor. The readings and selective readings."

"That the course was open-ended. There is no clear yes and no answer on all questions we talked about in class. Allows opinions and thoughts."

"Prof. Rossi is an excellent lecturer, with a vast and deep knowledge and enthusiasm to match."
"The professor's positive demeanor as well as depth of knowledge on the subject. Also, his ability to incorporate his opinions as well as his humor into each class."
"Professor is really passionate about teaching. Takes time to e-mail student individually."

Fall 2007

"Everything! Group projects, lectures, discussions, music, and class size."

"The material was interesting and opened my eyes to issues I was, prior to this course, unaware of. The enthusiasm displayed by the instructor encouraged me and supported learning."

"Class discussion and lectures. Reading assignments were very interesting."

"The mix of information and the reality to how it truly applies to today's world."

"Excellent professor."

Spring 2005 *** MISSING DATA ***
Fall 2004 "The material that the instructor has provided for us. The comfort zone that the instructor created was great."
"I loved the amount of interaction with the professor and other students; so much discussion reinforced what I was learning.'
"I definitely enjoyed the readings. I learned so much from them! I also appreciated the instructor's dedication to the course - it became evident that really prepared for this class."
"The readings were very interesting, the class discussions dynamic and engaging, and teaching method very thorough and organized."
"I really liked the group assignments because they were interesting and allowed for creative application of out knowledge on the topics."
"Everything - the highlight of my week. Best class of the semester."
"Professor is extremely accessible. I have never seen a prof. make such and effort to communicate with students."
"The teacher has a diverse syllabus and sparked good conversation."
"The group projects and class discussions. The reading material, though, was the best and most interesting out of any poli-sci class I've taken.
"The amount of dialogue encouraged by the instructor and the interactive learning."

If you were teaching this course, what would you do differently?

Fall 2009

"Nothing."

"More online participation opportunities."

"Nothing. It was perfect."

"Make class later in the day."

"More opportunities for class discussion."

"To be honest, nothing.."

"Group projects were interesting but seemed like a little too much busy work."
"Let Rossi teach it."
"Nothing, it was great!."

Fall 2007

"Nothing, Rossi is awesome! But this class should be two semesters long and 6 credits because we didn't have enough time to get to everything."

"Nothing."

"Create out of class discussion groups."

"Can't think of a single thing."

Spring 2005 *** MISSING DATA ***
Fall 2004 "Maybe look for a larger variety of readings that are mandatory from 3 books to 5. Maybe some specifically on media or consumerism or pop-culture."
"I think 2 10 - 15 page papers, a 3 page assignment due every other week, 150 pages of reading bi-weekly and a final is a bit much and overwhelming.'
"Nothing. This course is excellent."
"Nothing. Professor is perfect!."
"Not so many papers! :)."
"No complaints."
"Have it in a bigger room."
"I haven't seen the final yet, but one exam seems rough. with all the reading, especially since class was discussion and not lecture."
"Less online material. Only because I'm computer illiterate."

In what ways, if any, has this course or the instructor encouraged your intellectual growth and progress?

Fall 2009

"One of the best courses I have taken in college."

"Professor Rossi is an extremely intellectual professor who engaged me to think about the course topics and academia in general in a new and productive way. Excellent course."

"One of the best classes I have ever taken at Rutgers. Dr. Rossi engages the class, says what he really thinks, encourages discussion, and doesn't just lecture endlessly. Well done."

"Favorite professor at Rutgers. Globalization and Politics and Culture generated some of my best writing and definitely expanded my global political and economic awareness."

"I was able to better understand what globalization is and what it is built up upon. All the topics in class helped me understand both my culture and that of the West."

"Prof. Rossi is an inspiring academic that has constantly pushed us to do the best we can on our assignments. He is a harsh but fair grader."

"Because of his teaching methods and discussions i can talk about politics and the world better."
"Very excited and extremely effective speaker."
"Let Rossi educate America's youth."

Fall 2007

"Rossi was very passionate and well versed in all subject matter - this translated well to encouraging student participation."

"I would like to take similar courses with similar material."

"Thanks for the interesting class/semester. This is the only class I truly tried to never miss."

"A lot! I have learned a great deal in this class. It was challenging and helped me grow intellectually."

Spring 2005 *** MISSING DATA ***
Fall 2004 "Rossi, this is not the end of your teachings at all for me. I plan to stay in touch with you to help me out in the conquest of the world."
"This course has educated me so much about history, politics, and current events. I definitely feel like I have grown as a person from having taken this course. Don't change your instructional approach Rossi! High expectations demand optimal performance from us students."
"I loved this class! The variety of readings and discussion material widened my knowledge in many ways."
"Professor Rossi is the best professor I've had at Rutgers, and I've been here a while (5th year student)."
"Awesome professor. The instructor has encouraged me to work harder towards my goals and hopefully I someday can contribute in making the world a better place to live."
"In many lessons Rossi's teaching style or encouragement of discussion helped me look at issues in different perspectives and get a greater understanding overall."
"I have learned a great deal about the world and I will take the info I learned and apply it to everything I do in the future."
"Prof. Rossi - You're awesome! You made class fun to attend, interesting, and I learned so much! Thank you! Keep me updated on the classes you plan to teach in the future."
"I enjoyed the readings and even though a ton of work was done, I felt the class environment was laid back which allowed growth."
"I plan on taking a Globalization seminar for my Poli-sci major b/c of this class and read more books dealing with globalization."

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